Bar to Bar Through Beantown
“The service was phenomenal, and this is absolutely a high-end treat for those out-of-town guests who might want a recognizable name for dinner.”
Neighborhood: Back Bay
Address: 900 Boylston Street
Date of Visit: Monday, March 21, 2012
Server Name: Rocco
The Capital Grille is a well-known national chain of steakhouses that is high-end and delicious. Worthy of it’s great reputation, what most don’t know is that the orginial Capital Grille has New England roots, as it was established in Providence, RI. Owned by the same folks that brought us Bugaboo Creek Steak House (RIP), Longhorn, and Red Lobster, Capital Grille is by far the diamond of the bunch.
This location is fairly new, having opened less than a year ago in it’s current location within the Hynes Convention Center. The previous location on Newbury Street needed more space and this location provides just that. We went in on a warm day during restaurant week, and folks on the patio and at the tables adjacent to windows alike were taking in an al fresco dining experience, as the windows were open yet protected by screens to keep out any early-season bugs.
Upon entering the establishment we were warmly greeted, and as our reservation was confirmed, we took a look at the lockers behind the host stand which held specialty wines for VIPs – we’re thinking “Booze in Boston” would look good on one of those puppies someday. Regulars lease the lockers annually for around $350, which can usually hold up to a case of wine (predominantly reds are stored at Capital), giving them their favorites at their fingertips and taking the guesswork out of navigating the sophisticated wine menu.
The dark wood and low light throughout the dining room creates a romantic environment, and the modern bar was fairly full with parties waiting for their tables (and $33.12 meals!). The walls were adorned with artwork, including clocks of the world, US emblems, and large painting. We were seated in a more private and secluded room with a large TV on one wall (which was off), and two or three attentive staff members including our wonderful waiter Rocco, who greeted us by name as we sat down. The service was phenomenal, and this is absolutely a high-end treat for those out-of-town guests who might want a recognizable name for dinner.
Valerie’s Drink of Choice: The Bohemian
Ingredients: Absolut Peach with a splash of Mixed Berry Cordial, topped with chilled Champagne and garnished with fresh raspberries
Review: Although I am not the biggest pan of peach, I decided to order The Bohemian to try something different. This drink was fairly peachy, but not overwhelmingly so due to the bubbles in the champagne. It tasted somewhat like a peach gummy bear as well as a Bellini (which is usually made with a peach puree instead of peach vodka like this drink was). It was tasty, but I’m not sure it’s worthy of a $14 price tag!
Eric’s Drink of Choice: Stoli Doli
Ingredients: Stolichnaya Vodka infused with fresh pineapple, chilled and served straight up
Review: The Stoli Doli is considered Capital Grille’s signature martini, and it is quite deserving. This is another one of those dangerous cocktail, as the infusion eliminated the bite in the cocktail. So dangerous, in fact, infused spirits like this are actually illegal in states like Alabama. After a bit of research, I was able to find more information about how the drink is made:
“Capital Grille has pineapple flown in from Hawaii and it is sliced and put into a large, glass jar. The jar is then filled with Stoli vodka and left to sit for seven days. You can’t touch it until day eight. The result is no bite— just a nice, pineapple taste. We serve it in a martini glass.” —Jim Kinney, general manager, Capital Grille (Source)
So no, the pretty jar on the bar isn’t just there for show, it’s a large format Stoli Doli, and it’s delicious. The longer the vodka sits in the jar, the less bite it has and the smoother it becomes, so if you get the bottom of a jar, you’re in for a great treat. I don’t know what part of the jar I got, but Mr. Kinney is right, there is no bite to the drink, which in this case was perfect as it wasn’t overly sweet, either. The smooth, pineapple flavor wasn’t overwhelming and didn’t even pair horribly with my clam chowder (I was surprised, too), and the sugars from the pineapple gave it the perfect mouth feel without being too sweet in flavor. This drink was perfect for enjoying prior to an amazing dinner and after a long day, and makes me want to infuse some of my own at home!
Wine Prices: The website boasts that Capital Grill has over 350 wine offerings. Glasses start at $8 each.
Beer Prices: Thirteen beers were listed on the menu, but there was no pricing information.
Other: The Capital Grille offers eleven Classic Cocktails. Along with the two above, there is a Grapefruit Buck, Classic Manhattan, Appletini and an Adults Only Arnold Palmer. No prices were listed on the menu, but we are assume they would be comparable to what we paid.